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Gunslingers of the New West

Posted on Mon Apr 1st, 2019 @ 8:31pm by Lieutenant Limmi Ovim & Delilah Ovim & Lieutenant Colonel Kachiko Bayushi
Edited on on Tue Apr 9th, 2019 @ 11:37pm

Mission: Points Of Light
Location: Seppala Station

Kachiko paused before the hatch of the temporary quarters granted the newly arrived Tactical Officer, one Limmi Ovim, and her daughter. She wanted to get their professional relationship started and perhaps make an offer to the Lieutenant and her child.

Looking conspicuous in her unusual all-black uniform; even the communicator, rank insignia and Type-II Phaser a matching flat black and a stark contrast to the Lieutenant Colonel's inhumanly pale skin with shock- white hair; the diminutive Marine pressed the call key at the hatch.

With their roommate gone and Limmi not well enough acquainted to expect visitors, she reflexively extended her perceptions for insight on who was at the door. Nothing registered, a dissatisfying, though not necessarily alarming development. Far from her first null read, she'd learned how to foster situational awareness indirectly.

Meanwhile, Delilah knew the gist of her mother's delay in answering the chime.

"Mom, who is that?" asked the bed-perched child, repositioning herself to better see out of their bedroom threshold as Limmi set aside her tablet and arose from the common room couch.

"Stay there, sweetie," Limmi replied, expanding her perceptions in search of surface context from others nearby.

"But who is it?" the girl insisted.

"Stay there, sweetie," distantly refrained Limmi despite having come into her daughter's line of sight.

'I'm where I was when you first told me that,' cast Delilah in a grudging melody.

When the hatch slid open, Kachiko was forced to look up. Way up. 'So tall?' was all she thought for a moment, while the Betazoid before her was completely unable to read anything off of the Marine, not even an emotional state. It was almost as if there was a psychic void where the small woman stood.

"Lieutenant Ovim?" Kachiko asked. "Might I come in so we can talk?"

Limmi faintly recoiled at the small stranger's use of her name.

"Who are you?" she rebounded with a soft, yet stern voice hardened by suspicion despite lacking a specific charge. Her ambient scan fruitless beyond some passerby observations and a lot of extraneous thoughts, she struggled against her people's inclination to distrust those they couldn't perceive.

A soft voice sounded in Limmi's head, '~Calm, beautiful. I am not hostile. I am Lieutenant Colonel Bayushi Kachiko and we're most certainly going to be working together at least in the near future.~'

The Betazoid angled her head and scrutinized Bayushi for a moment. Unable to recall if she'd come across her dossier, Limmi did make out the affirming, affiliating insignias upon the other woman's caliginous attire. Still, they were but a handful of pieces to a puzzle that by and large remained scattered to her.

"How do you figure?" Limmi projected, uncertain of whether it'd be received since Bayushi's presence remained vacuous to her extrasensory.

'~I want to apologize first. I have to keep my shielding up on first encounters.~' Kachiko smiled faintly, apologetically. '~I have trouble with it. Telepaths tend to get overwhelmed from the power. In time, you will become accustomed to it and not be given terrible headaches.~'

'~I am in command of the defense of the Golovin System,~' she continued. '~I would greatly appreciate your assistance with setting up and testing system defenses. I also have very large family quarters here on the station. I and my daughter would like to offer to share with you and your daughter. ~'

"Why?" Helping fortify Golovin was an intuitable yes given their mutual allegiance. Sharing quarters. . .not so much. Hardly any more of a stranger than their current roommates, Bayushi was however far more enigmatic. Limmi had lived long enough to understand that she couldn't always abide by her inherent predisposition for transparency, yet she needed more than her visitor's apparent generosity to go on.

'~Because I briefly reviewed your file, Lieutenant. You're trustworthy enough to be around me that much.~' Kachiko offered a tight smile. '~You're a single mother with a difficult, troubled past much like me and you're a Tactical Officer like I used to be.~'

Then she spoke aloud, albeit in soft, hushed tones, "I understand you and would like to see that you and your little girl settle in nicely. I imagine that we're going to get along just fine."

"How old is Delilah, if you don't mind my asking?" Kachiko leaned against the bulkhead, looking up at the much taller Betazoid.

"Eight," Limmi answered, unable to help letting a small smile slip. Talking about Delilah almost, always had a pacifying effect on her, which also mellowed her wariness enough to let the other woman's offer advance into her consideration. Her reasons were good, even compelling considering her recent trials that fractured several of the relationships she might've turned to in order to try and steady her agitated conscience.

It was then that she realized that they were still standing in the entrance threshold.

"Why don't you come in and meet her?" she suggested buoyantly, stepping back and turning a knowing gaze to her little girl. "She's been probing to try and figure out who you are after all."

"Have not," Delilah transmitted, bounding off the bed and scurrying toward the restroom.

Kachiko grinned, calling after the child, "Hi! Don't worry about me, I don't bite."

Turning her gaze back to Limmi, "She's a couple of years younger than Reiko. Still, Reiko does seem to prefer the company of younger kids. I would bring her by to say hi, but she's spending some time in the infirmary. She was the first one the orbs on the planet chose to contact and the encounter was unusually draining for her."

"I hope fatigue was the worst that came of it," Limmi said in a concerned resonance, extending a hand toward the room's seating. Telepathically, she added of her own daughter, "She'll come out. She's just shy."

"I understand," Kachiko sighed aloud. "Reiko was very much like that, until she started spending time with the woman who became my wife. She almost withdrew again after Rio was murdered, but friends wouldn't let her. Particularly Staff Sergeant Hernandez, whom has been a constant in her life for ten years." Left unsaid was how much Limmi Ovim reminded her of Riosa. Particularly the blond hair and bright eyes.

"So I am tasked with the defense of Golovin and we have fortified the system with a number of orbital phaser cannons and torpedo launchers. While the ship is down for the next couple of weeks, I could use your help in calibrating and sighting things in," Kachiko offered the other woman a faint smile.

Back on the couch, Limmi smiled back despite a lingering crush of emotions stirred by hearing the fleeting details of Bayushi's life. Intrigued by her Sapphic nature, it was her use of the word 'murdered' to describe her wife's passing that the Betazoid found disturbing. Like many of her people, her intrinsic connectedness to life made the thought of willfully snuffing it out a revulsive one.

"I'd be happy to help. It'd be a more effective use of me and my team than supplementing Security or the Marines. Most of my people are shipborne weapons specialists or technicians with only basic infantry training." Limmi shook her head and chuckled, "Short of needing to appropriate specific systems on another ship or facility, we'd more than likely be in the way."

"I apologize for not being entirely forthright about myself at this point, hon," Kachiko frowned." If this uniform didn't give it away, I have led a very classified life for some time. I can't currently disclose the circumstances around my wife's passing, beyond that it was in the line of duty and it involved her rescuing someone else. Which is another reason why I keep my psyche shielded most of the time," she sighed. "I read that your family was heavily involved in the resistance during the occupation?"

Limmi nodded. "My mother partook in the psionic counterattack that inundated the Dominion line. My father and his family helped refugees flee to the resistance, but were killed by the Dominion's attempts to ferret it out beforehand." Bayushi's reference of the invasion from an indigenous perspective caught her attention. Her uncommon extrasensory strength already had Limmi curious about her origins. . .

"Are you from Betazed?"

"No," Kachiko shook her head. "I infiltrated the planet during the occupation and provided what support that I could."

"Oh," Limmi muttered perplexedly. "Well, whatever you did while you were there. . .thank you."

"Mom, are you okay?" a new voice interposed, toward which Limmi looked.

"I'm fine, love," she answered, turning into Delilah as she settled onto the couch. Her timing didn't surprise Limmi in the slightest; the Dominion occupation still provoked strong feelings her daughter was attuned to. "Are you ready to meet my guest?"

The girl nodded and waved at the visitor.

"I'm Delilah Ovim. What's your name?"

Kachiko wasn't much taller than the sweet young girl, which leant much towards her ability to connect to small children like Delilah. She gave the girl a delighted smile, "Hi Delilah. I'm Lieutenant Colonel Bayushi, but you can call me Kachiko. My daughter is about your size, a couple years older than you. She'll love spending time with you, if you like. She is a telepath like you. Her name is Reiko."

Briefly turning her attention back to Limmi, "There's another good reason we should share quarters here on the station. When we're both up here and not dirt side, the girls will have each other. Especially considering that they're both telepaths. Reiko kept running into kids on Earth whom were distrustful or worse towards her because of her talent. A couple of girls went as far as to assault her."

"I have taught her well on how to defend herself, but she was worried about hurting the other girls," Kachiko sighed. "I could work on teaching Delilah how to protect herself without hurting her attackers, like I have taught Reiko?"

"How does that sound to you?" inquired Limmi of Delilah, who hadn't had any issues socializing with other children she could recall. Her extrasensory abilities had manifested just within the past year however, and she'd secluded herself somewhat since. Understandably, she sought to buffer her suddenly dilated perceptions. Nevertheless, Limmi worried about her becoming too rooted in isolation, hence her efforts to pursue—or in the case of Shanghai, accept—postings conducive to her developing a sense of community. Disorienting as it initially was, Kachiko coming to her appeared to be a boon to that end.

Delilah's reaction seemed to further that hope. She looked to the petite woman, brow bunched.

"You can do that?" she piped in muted awe.

"I can do a lot of things you might not think possible, sweetheart," Kachiko grinned at the girl. "Some of them I can't really talk about."

"I have two bedrooms available for the two of you if you would like?" Kachiko asked. "Reiko and I have the other two bedrooms. We also have a cat, a big dopey Maine Coon that Reiko calls Bubba. You will probably like him, Delilah. He loves kids."

"So Kachiko wants us to stay with them," Delilah inducted, her pensive mien softening into a beseeching one by the time she'd risen her gaze to Limmi's. "Are we, mom? Can we, please?"

"Alright, we can," chortled Limmi, relieved that her daughter was finally excited about some of the prospects of life here. "I know you're not thrilled about sharing a room. Or having to filter out the noise of our roommates." Sliding an affirming gaze the other woman's way, she added, "Fortunately, we don't have much in the way of personal effects. The logistics of returning to our previous ship prior to coming here were totally impractical."

"That's not a problem," Kachiko smiled at the girl as she replied to her mother. "Reiko and I have our own runabout. We packed up our lives aboard it and followed the Shanghai on the Vulcan ship Surak."

"Commander Lylyl-Llytherraias is my half-sister. She modified the runabout and gave it to me as a gift and then Intel artificers further modified it so I could use it for clandestine operations," Kachiko shrugged. "When the situation on the planet has been resolved, you are both more than welcome to come stay with us in our home. We chose to separate ourselves from the colony proper about two kilometers, so we could relax with our shields down."

"As for our quarters here on the station, I've been trying to get the psi-inhibiting panels installed, but Engineering and Operations have been quite busy and I'm just not big enough to wrangle the panels myself. The bulkhead panels are easy enough, but the inhibition panels are two hundred kilos each."

"That's pretty heavy, Kachiko. Most people of most races can't handle that much by themselves," asserted Delilah with a measured matter-of-factness suggestive of her having sensed that the woman had fractured her esteem with an over-optimistic assessment of her capabilities. Neither had actually transpired of course.

Looking to her mother, she asked, "You couldn't even though you're bigger than a lot of girls, could you mom?"

"It certainly wouldn't be wise without some foreplanning," conceded Limmi, after which she playfully relayed to the other woman, "That wouldn't happen to be an attempt at a DIY party, would it Kachiko?"

'~A what party?~' the Marine seemed genuinely confused.

"A do-it-yourself party." Kachiko had been so assured and earnest beforehand that the uncertainty which flickered through her demeanor amused Limmi into a titter. "It's when you arrange a get-together around a simple home renovation. It splits the effort and allows you to spend time with friends. That may've not been your witting intention, but considering what you're doing for Delilah and me, I'd be happy to go along with that anyway." Along with feeling it an appropriate gesture of gratitude, Limmi hoped the familiarity of her own abode would incite Kachiko to open up slightly more.

"Oh, no," Kachiko chuckled. "I have no intention in doing this myself at all. I'm simply having to wait until things settle down on the planet. When that happens, you two will be more than welcome to join us at our home just outside of the colony. It's very peaceful there."

"I hope we'll see so soon," bade Limmi, standing. "But for now, we'll prepare to join you here on the station. Should we just come by when we're ready or do you to coordinate? It may seem like a silly question, but I figure you probably have a lot going on, including Reiko recovering."

"I'm not really doing much beyond system testing and calibration," Kachiko remarked. "That said, Reiko is in Sickbay and I guarantee you that she'll want me to help you however I can. Maybe we could go down to Sickbay before then and you could meet her?"

"Also, Reiko has two cousins here. One is the Captain and Commander Lylyl-Llytherraias' daughter, Cai. The other is the Captain's niece, Hiroko. They're common fixtures with Reiko, so I imagine that Delilah will come to know them well," Kachiko grinned at the young girl. "Fair warning. The Commander is half-Orion, her daughter a quarter. If Delilah spends much time around Cai, she may need inoculation or the pheromones may bother her."

"I should be okay," Delilah proclaimed. "Mom has had me on a multi-spectrum blocker for a few years now. I didn't like it at first because I got really hot and dizzy after the doses. But it's not nearly as bad now, and it's nice not having to fret over other races' body chemistry messing with mine."

Speaking of her mother, the girl’s focus then swung to Limmi. "Mom, I'd really like to meet Reiko first. I don't think we should just. . .be there when she comes home."

"I think that's a fine idea," Limmi said, smiling at the thoughtfulness of Delilah’s perspective as she regarded Kachiko appraisingly.

"If you're not otherwise engaged, we could go right now?" the diminutive woman offered. "I can tell you right now that she would greatly appreciate visitors, especially visitors like Delilah. Unfortunately, her cousins can't spend much time there."

The elder Ovim shrugged. "I'm not in demand anywhere else. Delilah, are you ready?"

"I am," she replied, springing up.

Kachiko smiled at the girl's enthusiasm. "Yeah, Reiko will like you."


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